Family medicine is one section of the medical industry that deals with primary healthcare for families as a unit rather than an individual. Family medicine doctors therefore need extensive schooling for them to achieve the right certification and licensing to practice. With the career being a well-paying one besides serving those in need, many students have developed desires to be family medicine doctors. If you are wondering what it will take, how long and any other concerns regarding how to become a family medicine doctor, you are on the right page. Here are the six steps to follow as guided by Dr. Ankita Singh if you want to become a family medicine doctor today.
Finish undergraduate program and medical school basics
A bachelor degree is very important for matriculants enrolling for medical schools today even though it is not compulsory. Most medical schools will demand that students get at least a B in the courses they do before applying for medical school. Besides excelling in Mathematics, English composition, inorganic chemistry and organic chemistry with lab and biology, students need to participate in extracurricular activities for instance leadership, volunteering and even medical care shadowing.
Take and submit your MCAT scores
How dos your Medical College Admission tests look like? Before being accepted into any medical school, applicants need to take the test and submit their scores. Different institutions will use computer based algorithms for screening the applicants which means those falling blow the required standard will not be admitted.
The test takes around seven hours and thirty minutes with questions testing sections like scientific inquiry and reasoning skills, chemical and physical foundations of biological systems section, psychological, social and biological foundations of behavior section. The test also measures your knowledge on biological and biochemical foundations of living systems section.
Attend allopathic/osteopathic medical school
The first two years of medicine school, students are taught laboratory courses and courses on basics of medicine. In this section you should find courses in anatomy, pathology, biochemistry, pharmacology and even pathology. It is in the middle of the second year that medical students prepare for their USMLE step 1 examination. In the third and fourth years, students learn clinical medicine and get first-hand experience in patient care.
Time for your internship and family medicine residency
It is at this stage that you go for one year of internship after which you will need to commit to another three years of family medicine residency. Despite graduating from medical school, you will only be allowed to practice under guidance or supervision. During the first intern year of family residence, you will prepare to take the USMLE step 3 exams. While in their residency, graduates learn more information on different disciplines like internal medicine, surgery, psychiatry, geriatrics, obstetrics and Gynecology.
Specialty board examination
The knowledge gained during residency will be tested during the specialty board exam. It is one of the exams that take the whole day to complete as it tests different areas. It is after passing this test that one becomes a doctor and may be allowed to work unsupervised.
Finish fellowship in subspecialty
If you want to, you are allowed to get a fellowship in their desired sub-specialty. The class may take another year even though a few fellowships may not necessarily have board examinations. It is after completion of the same that one can become a family medicine doctor and be licensed to practice.